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London Evening Standard Article

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Credit to Steve Mcnamara for not being afraid to try new ideas and approaches to assist England's World Cup bid . It can only be positive to communicate with proven winners, even if they come from a different sport. Admittedly some people may not like some of the things introduced such as the Exiles, Knights and high-altitude training, but these new ideas seem to be having some effect in creating greater team unity and performance.

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It also chimes in with one thing Phil Clarke has always said. If we are to close the gaps on the Aussies we can't just copy them, as we'll always be catching up. We need to do something different to what they do.

Whether it is enough, only time will tell, but all the talk is about how much being part of the England squad means to the players.

With the World Cup coming up, it's hard to imagine there will be many players, either side of the world, who will put a minor operation ahead of playing for any nation they qualify for in the World Cup next year. The excitement and anticipation ahead of the World Cup is like nothing we've experienced before. That can only help England and the other nations, as the top teams will be under a different type of pressure.

Normally it's all "in house". Aussies are the best, no-one else is interested and they just get on with being the best. As Luke Burgess says in the papers this week, the English RL world sees the Aussies as supermen, but they're just human. Ultimately it comes down to the available squad each team has. Next year, the rest of the viewing world won't have 40 years of it being drummed into them that the Aussies always win, and the rest are just in it for the scraps they leave.

The Kiwis have overcome this hurdle, and many of the things that England have done in the last couple of years, is helping to instill in the England players, that they too, can beat the Aussies on their day.

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